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Commercial Real Estate

The 10 Best Dallas Suburbs

Take our tour of the greatest places to live outside of Dallas.
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photography by Billy Surface

7. University Park

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photography by Billy Surface

Population: 23,500
Annual growth since 1990: 0.3%
Average home sales price in 2009: $1,058,523
Median age of residents: 31.2
Families with kids under 18: 41.7%
Median household income: $92,778

What they say: Residents tout their short walk to Snider Plaza, local parks, and response time for emergency services. But it’s the high-performing schools and sense of community that brought (and keeps) them here. “When something happens to somebody, you know you’re going to have a million people bringing you dinner, picking up your kids at school, going to the grocery store for you,” one resident says. All four elementary schools feed into one middle school and one high school, solidifying that community from an early age. UP residents also like that they get to live in a small town yet are close to all that Dallas has to offer. What’s not to love? Well, the lack of diversity for one. Case in point: the high school boys basketball team has one minority—and he’s only half Asian. And all that community can be a little too close. “If I sneeze, my next door neighbor doesn’t need to know,” one resident says. Another downside is that kids with money can cause a special type of trouble, as in the recent case of a 15-year-old HP student who drank herself into a coma at the Palladium Ballroom (she recovered). The three HP teens who were with her had such high-tech fake IDs that the Secret Service is investigating. Homes start at $650,000 and generally don’t go higher than $7 million, although the occasional estate can go as high as $20 million. You’ll pay $1 million to $1.5 million for an average UP home.

What we say: University Park usually does better than this. UP ranked No. 1 on our list in 2002, 2004, and 2008, sliding to No. 4 in 2006. What happened this year? Crime was up and housing appreciation was down—both no doubt related to the faltering economy. Like HP, UP has a reputation that isn’t always kind. But when the 79-year-old crossing guard at the Mockingbird and Douglas intersection was out for two months with an illness, HPISD parents visited him in the hospital, replaced the carpet in his home, brought him food, cleaned his house, and shopped for him as he recovered.


Read about our low-cost trip to University Park.


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